Lampton Academy ‘Reaching the Unreachable’
Four teachers from Lampton Academy School in Hounslow spent their summer teaching in a school in India. In the town of Manvi, the school had been set up by Jesuit priests with an aim to ‘Reach the Unreachable’ and provide the Dalit children of the area the opportunity to learn English. As the caste system (the idea that people are borne into a position in society) is still prevalent in that area, the children who are considered the lowest caste and not normally given opportunities for education, are now being empowered through education.
Rachel Lawrence an RE teacher from Lampton Academy led the team of four teachers and has an ongoing link with the school after her visits during the floods in 2008. She described how, without this opportunity, the children would be mostly confined to working in the fields at a young age. The teachers, Polly Shoebridge (Psychology) Morgan Myrams (RE) and Muriel Huet (Modern Foreign Languages) reported being overwhelmed by experience,
The students mostly board at the school and can start as early as three years old. They have one box of belongings, sleep on the floor and work incredibly hard as they are aware of how this opportunity could give them access to a better life: ‘The students’ were so generous, full of love and eager to learn’.
The teachers from London brought along posters, puppets and other resources which were greatly received by the school as they have limited resources.
It costs only £200 to sponsor a child for a year and the teachers at Lampton are trying to raise as much funds and support for this project over the new academic year. Already planned is a pen pal exchange and Polly Shoebridge will be running the London Marathon for the cause. The link to the charity is below as are some photographs from the trip.